Freedom Socialist Letters to the Editor, August 2014

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Hard times

In El Salvador the newly elected government hopes to continue the social programs of the previous leftist Fuentes government. The current Ceren government will be affected by the growing crisis or the possible fall of the Maduro government in Venezuela [Venezuela: Imperialist threats and the limits of populism, Vol. 35, No. 3].

This indicates hard times for El Salvador. The only solution for us and the Venezuelan government is empowerment of the people in defense of their interests — not those of the capitalist groups. In other words, furtherance of the socialist project.

José Alvarez Salazar, Cuscatlán, El Salvador


Gas, not oil, key

This great article from Megan Cornish shows how to demonstrate that ‘the main enemy is at home’ without lapsing into campism [Bloodshed rises in Ukraine as both sides dig in, Vol. 35, No. 3.]

She states that “the U.S. and EU as well as Russia are using Ukraine as a pawn in their power games. Real popular movements do exist on both sides of the spiraling conflict, though each side discounts the legitimacy of the other. And both Ukrainians and Russians have right-wing nationalist and fascist elements involved.”

I disagree with the subhead that says “Once more oil is the key.” It also understates Russian’s involvement, ignoring the many arrests of Russian Special Forces troops inside Ukraine. Follow Ukraine: Activist Perspective and UKRAINE AID for more insight.

Duncan Chapel, London


Don’t label me

I support full equality for LGBT people. But this new trend to refer to women born as women as cisgendered is so misogynistic. I was born a woman and have suffered in a patriarchal society as a woman. Don’t use terms such as cisgender to define me, as was done in Transpeople face harrowing challenges, [Vol. 35, No. 3].

Lilith Feldwoman, Tulsa, Okla.


Stop torture!

The Pelican Bay Human Rights Movement – First Amendment Campaign stands in solidarity with the Stop the Torture Campaign, as our goals and objectives are mutual. We aim to eliminate torture in all of its many forms.

In 2006, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDRC) created a communications management union (CMU) at Pelican Bay State Prison (PBSP) that literally reinforces their totalitarian rule, by dehumanizing prisoners through the following six methods of desocialization.

Being prohibited from talking to another prisoner, as all forms of communication is considered gang related. Being placed on mail and visiting restrictions, based upon innocuous activity; being prohibited from studying, reading and writing about our political, social and cultural history.

Being coerced to speak only in the English language as all other languages are deemed gang related. Keeping New Afrikan prisoners housed in isolation from each other. And intimidating family and community members to stop writing by sending them arbitrary notices that state the writer is engaging in gang activity by writing.

These six social deprivations amount to torture. We’re looking for volunteers and sponsors to join forces with us. For more info and to learn how you can support our righteous cause, please log onto or contact us.

Kijana Tashiri Askari, S/N Marcus Harrison #H54077, PO Box 7500 / D3-122 / SHU, Crescent City, CA 95532

Political prisoner suffers stroke

Richard Mafundi Lake, Alabama political prisoner, had a stroke on Saturday, April 19. Unfortunately, there is no doctor at this facility on weekends.

A doctor finally saw him three days later and no tests were done to determine the extent of the damage. Mafundi was told he would get over it. It wasn’t until Tuesday, April 29 that he was sent to a hospital to have a CT scan done.

Mafundi was released from the infirmary on Monday, May 5 and sent back to his cell. He is slowly getting better.

The Alabama prison system doesn’t care about the healthcare of its prisoners, but we are holding them responsible. We need help in complaining about the poor healthcare for Mafundi as well as other prisoners in Alabama and across the country. We must fight for those who are imprisoned and especially for those who are unjustly incarcerated for their political beliefs.

Free Richard Mafundi Lake and all political prisoners!

Mafundi Lake Support Committee, PO Box 12152, Birmingham, AL 35202

The FS welcomes your feedback, opinions, and resource info. Letters may be edited for length. Please write to 5018 Rainier Avenue South, Seattle, WA 98118, or email

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